Dow futures sink 200 points after Trump says China deal may be best after 2020 election

Stock index futures pointed to a second day of heavy losses on Wall Street Tuesday, after President Donald Trump said the idea of holding off on a U.S.-China trade deal until after the 2020 presidential election had appeal, undermining market confidence that a deal may be done before fresh import tariffs are imposed on December 15.

Trump’s willingness to open new fronts in the trade war also – with Argentina, Brazil and France – despite signs of damage to the global economy has unnerved markets.

What are major indexes doing?

Futures on the Dow Jones Industrial Average YMZ19, -0.90%  were down 235 points, or 0.8%, at 27,557, while S&P 500 futures ESZ19, -0.74%  gave up 21.45 points, or 0.7%, to trade at 3,092.75. Nasdaq-100 futures NQZ19, -0.99%  were off 76.25 points, or 0.9%, at 8,240.50.

Stocks saw their biggest one-day decline in nearly eight weeks on Monday, with the Dow DJIA, -0.96% falling 268.37 points, or 1%, to end at 27,783.04. The S&P 500 SPX, -0.86% dropped 27.11 points or 0.9%, to close at 3,113.87, while the Nasdaq Composite COMP, -1.12%  finished at 8,567.99, with a loss of 97.48 points or 1.1%.

What’s driving the market?

Index futures gave up early gains after Trump, speaking at a London news conference where he is attending a NATO meeting, said he had “no deadline” when it comes to concluding the long-running U.S.-China trade talks.

“In some ways, I think it’s better to wait until after the election if you want to know the truth. But I’m not going to say that, I just think that,” Trump said.

While Trump has made similar comments in the past, analysts said stocks remain highly sensitive to headlines and comments on the trade talks, with optimism over the prospect for a so-called phase one deal running

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